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'05 Aqua Blur 6-spd
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I want to remove my Billet grill inserts to clean 'em up and repaint them.

But I can't figure how to remove the screws that hold the insert pieces to the original grill and then reattach the clips.

It doesn't seem that reaching up from the bottom of the fascia will work. Will removing the grill spear provide access to the back of the grill? :unsure:

This is eBay site that is selling inserts like the ones I'm dealing with.

And a picture of the front of my R with the Billet grill inserts.

598276
 

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The clips are 'speed nuts' with the front accessible screws threading into them, springing them and keeping everything in tension. Remove the screws and the clips will fall out. You may need to reach up from below to hold the clips during removal.

Removing the centre grill bar did not give me any additional space. Just amounted to another opportunity to break the plastic tabs on the spear.

You may want to put masking tape above and below each grill set so you don't scratch the nice paint on the nose when you remove them. You may need to use plastic pry tools to help coax the grill sets out if yours fit as tightly as mine do.

To help during re-install, consider using nylon ties to temporarily hold the grille sets in place while you reach up behind to position the clip correctly to receive the screws. Masking tape also helps in preventing scratches for re-installation.
 

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04 Black, 05 Black, 05 Aqua Blur
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you can flip the plastic wire ties and pull them in back wards to hold it temporarily. If the wire ties are put in back wards the back is slick with no teeth for the lock tab to grab on to. I do this a lot when I want to hold something and remove it easily rather than use it and cut it.
 

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Spirited driver!
2006 3SS
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I recommend that you were a glove and long-sleeved shirt when reaching up behind the grill. The cooling fins they sit in front of can work like a cheese grater on your hand and arm. Don't ask how I know this!
 

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'05 Aqua Blur 6-spd
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
...
To help during re-install, consider using nylon ties to temporarily hold the grille sets in place while you reach up behind to position the clip correctly to receive the screws. Masking tape also helps in preventing scratches for re-installation.
Reach up behind to position the clip is exactly what I can't figure how to do. How do you reach behind the grill to position the clip?

Looks like the top of the grill is closed off so you can't down. And lower fascia rolls under too far to be able to reach up and forward to position the clip, especially without a lift.
 

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My recollection is that I removed the large plastic cover on top between the hood latch and filter assembly for access from above.

For limited access from below, I laid on my back and reached up where necessary. My truck only has stock fascia and air dam, so may have more space than yours.

On my lower most grille bar unit, I ONLY used black zip ties, judicially hidden. I did not use any screws and clips on that one. As you said, too tough to get hands and arms up there. The zip ties are easily hidden and difficult to pick out on the lower unit.
 

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I did all 3 from working below. It's not rocket science but it does take a little time and patience. After you've done it once, you know where the pit falls are. And yes those cooling fins are ready to bite you in a moments notice.
 

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My recollection is that I removed the large plastic cover on top between the hood latch and filter assembly for access from above.

For limited access from below, I laid on my back and reached up where necessary. My truck only has stock fascia and air dam, so may have more space than yours.

On my lower most grille bar unit, I ONLY used black zip ties, judicially hidden. I did not use any screws and clips on that one. As you said, too tough to get hands and arms up there. The zip ties are easily hidden and difficult to pick out on the lower unit.
(y)
Yes, That large black plastic part that has diagrams on it for the belts and also other printed info. It comes off easily. There are two black plastic pop off retainers at each front corner and two nuts on the back side that hold it in place.

Remove those nuts and retainers and that whole plastic part slides up over the hood latch and from under the air filter and BINGO you now have the access you are looking for.:oops:
 

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'05 Aqua Blur 6-spd
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I taken all the suggestions so far in trying to get access "behind" the grill from the top.

I did remove the "large black plastic part" (the technical name :ROFLMAO:) as suggested by @VI Ken and @moscooter. It does open it up more and I can reach down somewhat.

In looking at the parts covering the top of the grill, it looks like there are a coupla more parts that could come off to open it even more. But... There's always a "but," isn't there? o_O

But there are some kind "push-pins" or "Molly bolt"-like pins (in the red circles) holding the pieces together. How do I get them out? Drill 'em out? Any idea where I could buy replacement pieces, even better what the actual part number might be?

You can see from the picture why I need to clean/repaint the billet grill or install a new one.
598385



A "from behind the grill" picture to show the back of the "Molly bolt"-like fastener. (That was an incredibly difficult shot to get; couldn't actually see it.). :censored:
598386
 

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2006 S/C Silver & 2006 Pac Blue 6spd
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Don't drill those "molly" bolts out. You could try and unbolt the two grey 10mm, just inboard of the second second set of red circles and try and stuff your arm in.

FWIW: I wriggled under the R and reached up from the bottom and just grit my teeth grabbing the little tin clips with one hand and turning the screw driver with the other. My fingers were more sore than my arm scraping on the fins. Once I took them grill bars off, they have stayed off as I need the airflow (and the little metal tins really p-ed me off by the time I was done).

This isn't a fun job, installation or removal.

Best of luck sir.
 

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@Garris1 I would pull the whole front bumper off before I drilled out those circled. I was able to reach up from under the front bumper when I put mine on two of my trucks. I can't remember anything overly difficult about either one being hard. I have one I got from @wizzr waiting to go on the third truck. I don't think there is an easy way to get to the clips on the back side from the top easily.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Don't drill those "molly" bolts out. You could try and unbolt the two grey 10mm, just inboard of the second second set of red circles and try and stuff your arm in.
...
@Garris1 I would pull the whole front bumper off before I drilled out those circled. I was able to reach up from under the front bumper when I put mine on two of my trucks....I have one I got from @wizzr waiting to go on the third truck. I don't think there is an easy way to get to the clips on the back side from the top easily.
@TXNSSR, removing the two 10mm working in opening the top. Got the top Billet off. have the two lower ones to go. As you. said, it's no fun.

What it didn't do was rid the screws and clips from the rust that locked them together. o_O WD40 solved that.

@Stlhotrod , how hard is to take the bumper cover off. Are there any hidden nust and bolts holding it on.

@wizzr, are you still making the Billet grills. I can see that I'm not going to be able to repaint the one I have. If not, there are several on eBay, but which is the best or are they all the same and price is the only difference?

Picture 1: With the two 10mm screws removed and two shims to push to grill out more so I can reach behind the grill.
598422


Picture 2: What the thing (technical term) circled?
598423
 

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To pull the entire front bumper cover, remove the two 7 or 8mm bolts on each wheel well lowest in the front. There are 2 push rivets under the front that hold the front of the inner wheel well in remove them. Then you can reach up inside the sides of the bumper cover and there are 3 10 MM bolts on each side. One just in front of the wheel well opening, one in front of the marker light and one more in front. There are two 10 mm nuts to remove and 2 10mm bolts in the front. The bumper is now loose. There is a large plug in for the front harness on the drivers side by the horn. Unplug that and it all comes off together.
 

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As for the thing circled, on my truck it would be called MISSING. I don't have it on my truck. Sorry couldn't resist the joke.

@wizzr wasn't building the billet grills, he had one left over he didn't put on his truck and I got it from him. It was one of those friend helping a friend out deals. He wasn't going to use it and sent it to me. I have been to lazy to put it on.
 

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I THINK the circled part is the outside air temperature sensor.

Nick
Well that would make a lot of sense in my case, as my accessory gauge for the outside temp is not working. I guess I should look around to see if it is hanging some place or totally gone. The wiring should still be there some place. You know how use full that gauge is, I don't know how I have gone this long with out it.
 

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One of the SoCal Nuts
ROTM 1/2016 - 2006 PacBlues 376 & 29
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Well that would make a lot of sense in my case, as my accessory gauge for the outside temp is not working. I guess I should look around to see if it is hanging some place or totally gone. The wiring should still be there some place. You know how use full that gauge is, I don't know how I have gone this long with out it.
A drop light is nice as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I did all 3 from working below. It's not rocket science but it does take a little time and patience. After you've done it once, you know where the pit falls are. And yes those cooling fins are ready to bite you in a moments notice.
Ken, you're making this much harder than it needs to be. Simply lay on your back in front of the truck and reach you arm up between the grill and the cooling fins. All the connections are within arms reach.
...You could try and unbolt the two grey 10mm, just inboard of the second second set of red circles and try and stuff your arm in.

FWIW: I wriggled under the R and reached up from the bottom and just grit my teeth grabbing the little tin clips with one hand and turning the screw driver with the other. My fingers were more sore than my arm scraping on the fins. Once I took them grill bars off, they have stayed off as I need the airflow (and the little metal tins really p-ed me off by the time I was done).

This isn't a fun job, installation or removal.

Best of luck sir.
Finally finished. Was interrupted by the RS virus. And being frustrated.

All y'all are correct on all points. It's a unfun task (like Portland, OR, doesn't have "homeless" any more; they are "unhomed, according to NPR News." o_O )

As @wizzr noted, I now know the pit falls, and some more.

I couldn't figure how you guys worked on it from the bottom. I couldn't get my hand behind the grill from any position under the R. I even had it up on jack stands which provided more "underneath" room. Then toward the end, I realized that I had an early-designed SE front license plate bracket has a bar that rans side-to-side attached to the lower radiator bracket. It puts that bar between the radiator and the fascia. Cuts off "underneath" access, at least for my hand.

So I did everything from the top. @TXNSSR's suggestion to pull the two screws allowed to the front to be pulled out further.

Also I put a towel over the cooling fins from above, wouldn't know how to do it from below. BTW, what are those cooling fins cooling?

Woulda been nice if I coulda taken the temperature sensor off. I'd expect there to be a snap clip, but I didn't want to mess with it and break something.

I did get the speed nuts off the old fashioned way, with my fingers. That was really unpleasant since some had rusted to the screws. A little WD40 latter...

The job has to be done from both sides of the sides of the grill, inside and outside. At least I didn't find a way put the nuts on the screws with reaching from inside the grill. Even using zip ties (used two on the outside of the lowest grill set) the tie has to be turned around from the inside. Below is a picture of the original fasteners and the new ones I used to reattach it. I did try some molly bolt fasteners, but they were too small to not twist in the honey comb hole in the original grill. That might work if I had sized it correctly.

Lessons learned:
I like the "billet" look is the best looking of all add-ons for the grill. However...
However, aside from the difficulty of putting it on which is considerable, the fitment is a problem. There are two V-angles are involved with original grill, a horizontal and a vertical. Neither are correct or sufficent for the original grill on my set. That makes the installation "not look right" when "up close and personal."

#10 screw heads are too large and won't fit between the bars of the billet grill. That's why I used #8. #8 washers are also too large to work on the outside of the grill, only work on the back side.

I think I would run a 1/2" or 3/4" strip of silver/gray (since my spear is satin) vinyl tape across the lower grill bars. Of course they're not straight, but curve upward from the center point so the tape has to bend/turn at the point. Ain't nut'in easy.

Wow, that's a lotta words and work for something that only aesthetics and not functionality or performance. But aesthetics matter. To me. :rolleyes:

Alas I don't have any pictures of what the billet grill bars look like before and after I repainted them. After all that was the entire point of the exercise--to make the billet grill look like new. Gads! :oops:

Fastners:

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